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Bideford 1 St Albans City 0: match report

By NDJMark  |  Posted: February 15, 2014

  • Danny Sullivan scored his first goal for Bideford

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Danny Sullivan scored on his home debut as Bideford beat St Albans City 1-0 at the Sports Ground this afternoon.

Five days after the two sides shared a 1-1 draw in Hertfordshire, Sullivan's 18th-minute strike was enough to settle the return fixture.

The win moved Bideford back up to fifth in the Calor League Premier Division and within two points of their third-placed opponents.

A strong defensive display brought a sixth consecutive clean sheet at home and they might have added to their lead in a lively first half.

Sullivan, the Torquay United loanee, rounded off a flowing move with his first goal for the club.

A counter-attack was initiated by Richard Groves and Matt Bye in midfield before Sean Downing switched the ball to the right wing.

Sullivan cut inside onto his left foot, drilling a shot beyond Paul Bastock into the roof of the net.

Bideford continued on the front foot and  went close to a second goal when Owen Howe had a shot blocked by Tom Ward.

Howe then beat Ward with a clever turn but was unable to pick out Craig Duff as the space opened up.

At the other end, goalkeeper Steve Oliver did well to deny Matt Taylor and Groves saw a header deflect narrowly wide of his own goal.

Despite losing only one of their previous 20 games, St Albans were never allowed to impose themselves against a hungry home side. 

Bideford went close again early in the second half when Duff cut the ball back and Sullivan had a shot cleared off the line by Lee Chappell.

As they chased the game, St Albans sent on Jamal Lowe and Mark Nwokeji but despite increasing the pressure they could not make the breakthrough.

Rob Farkins and Ben Gerring were in commanding form and the defence coped well with a succession of corners from James Connolly.  

Duff had another half chance to put the result beyond doubt when he slashing across goal after Groves won a challenge with Bastock.

Bideford, who travel to ninth-placed Hitchin Town next, were good value for their win which keeps alive their hopes of securing a play-off place.
Bideford: Steve Oliver, Ian Sampson, Ben Gerring, Rob Farkins, Stephen Reed, Danny Sullivan, Matt Bye, Richard Groves, Craig Duff (Matt Hockley 78), Sean Downing, Owen Howe (Kevin Squire 76). Subs not used: Graham Mercieca, Nick Milton, Nick Barker.

St Albans City: Paul Bastock, Kerrea Gilbert, Tom Ward, Ben Martin, Lee Chappell, James Connolly, Ram Marwa, Richard Graham (Chris Henry 73), Matt Taylor (Jamal Lowe 58), Peter Dean (Mark Nwokeji 58), John Frendo. Subs not used: Danny Green, Howard Hall.

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